Letter of June
Senators and officers led faculty engagement in the draft self study, leading to approval on the last meeting of this academic year last week. The executive committee spent significant time discussing the planning agendas of most relevance for faculty. In both this review as well as the writing of the 288 page document, faculty members from every division participated. Following approval by the College Council last week, the board of trustees is set to approve both colleges' self studies on July 11, 2011. All this work will lead up to the visit of the accreditation team at the end of October. Full details can be found on the college's accreditation website.
A big part of the self-study for accreditation describes the important progress we've made in assessing learning and other outcomes. Recent progress in this area is also described in the latest draft of the SLO newsletter, produced by our colleagues Pape, Ramirez, and Haynes, which you can find on the SLO website.
Other assessment and planning work
In addition to the PLOs and SLOs that we have written and are assessing, the college has also been taking a good hard look at governance through a governance task force co-chaired by faculty senator Stockwell along with VP Cook and President of the Classified Senate Marquez. Faculty leadership was also critical in the formation of the new College Planning Committee, set to review and assess all of our shared governance work.
By now, most divisions have chosen their representatives who will serve as senators in the fall. All information is current on this list of Executive Committee members, and remaining positions will be filled soon.
New degrees for transfer
The board of trustees approved the first new AA-Transfer degrees for our college: Math and Communications. These degrees will now be sent to the state chancellor's office for approval, thus bringing the college into full compliance with the mandates of SB 1440 legislation. In the fall, and throughout the next academic year, we should see a lot more degrees coming through the pipeline. Thanks to all those faculty members who have worked hard on creating these new degrees, especially faculty leaders in Math and Speech, and our curriculum chairs Khanna and Sherman, as well as Chang, Te, and Clark-Tillman in the curriculum office.
AB 515 and other resolutions
In the final meetings of this academic year, the Executive Committee read, discussed, modified, and read again a number of resolutions. One of them demanded action against AB 515, a bill that is now in the state senate after passage in the assembly. Read the full resolution for details, but the concise message that I communicated to all members of the senate education committee is that the bill threatens the fundamental equity of opportunity provided by California's community colleges. Another important resolution we passed, after repeated consultation with the Faculty Association and our counterparts at Foothill, stipulated our stance on SLOs and assessment. This resolution underlines the strengths of SLOs in improving faculty work, while reiterating the position that SLOs shall not be used to evaluate individual faculty members.
A number of faculty participated in commencement ceremonies on a beautiful Saturday morning. Thanks to all who attended and special thanks from Donna Jones-Dulin to the faculty members who so graciously gave up their seats to graduating students when we ran out of chairs.
With this final newsletter, my term as your faculty president comes to an end, and I wanted to state without equivocation how proud I am of the work that goes on at De Anza College. I have witnessed first-hand the dedicated leadership of the senators who represent your divisions as well as individual faculty memers who participate in governance and decision-making. I also wanted to take a moment to thank all those who mentored, guided, advised, cajoled, needled, and questioned me. Any success I enjoyed in this challenging year of budget calamities, legislative mandates, and accreditation work was due in a large part to faculty, staff, and student leaders. In particular, thanks are due to Anu, Andrew, Bob, Brian, Cassie, Christina, Coleen, Cynthia, Edmundo, Jackie, Jim, Karen, Kevin, Letha, Lydia, Marcy, Mary, Mary, Mary Kay, LaQuisha, Neesha, Rich, Rick, Rowena, Sal, Stacey, Stephanie, Tina, Toño, Virginia, and Ze.
Finally, my best wishes go to my successor, Dr Karen Chow, who takes over the helm of the senate on Friday the 1st. In Karen, the faculty have elected a dedicated faculty member, a thoughtful and perceptive colleague, and a proven leader. She will make you proud.
De Anza College Academic Senate,